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ANATOMY OF THE AYE-AYE                        549
attention may be called to the long and bushy tall, to the greater
length of the hind-limbs., to the abdominal teats (one pair) in the
female, and above all to the singular third digit of the hand*
which is thin and elongated. The thumb is, as in other Lemurs,
opposable, and has a flat nail; the remaining digits have claws,
as have also the toes with the exception of the great toe, which
has a flat nail like the thumb.
The anatomy of this animal has occupied the attention of a
considerable number of observers, dating from. Sir R. Owen, who
was the first to give a connected account of its entire organisa-
tion. The most recent paper of importance is. by Dr. Oudemans.1
The teeth are very unlike those of other Lemurs. The most
remarkable divergence is in the incisors, which are present to
the number of but a single pair in each jaw, and are shaped
like those of the Hodentia, and in the same way as in that
group grow from persistent pulps. There are likewise, as in
the Bodents, no canines. There are two promoters in the
upper jaw (none in the lower) and altogether twelve molars, so
that there is a total of eighteen teeth. The intestine has a
moderately long caecum. The brain has been most fully described
by Oudemans, who had fresh material to work with, the brain
described by Owen having been extracted from a spirit-preserved
carcase. The angular fissure is well developed, as in Lemur ,nd
the Indri ; but it does not join the infero-frontaL The antero-
temporal fissure is also well developed.
" The name of Aye-aye/3 wrote Sonnerat, the discoverer of the
animal, " which I have retained for it, is a cry of surprise of the
inhabitants of Madagascar." It is, however, usually said that
the animal itself makes a sound which may be written in the
same way (or with an initial H). It is an arboreal and
nocturnal animal, which accounts for its excessive rarity at one
time. In one of his many eloquent essays upon natural history
the late Mr. P. H. Gosse adduced the Aye-aye as an example of
a creature on the verge of extinction. It is, however, now more
frequently met with, though the superstition of the natives
renders its capture a matter of some difficulty. There is a
specimen at the moment of writing in the Zoological Society's
Gardens. There has been some discussion as to the use of the
slender middle finger: it is stated that it can thrust it into the